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SR3 and sync sound


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#1 Evan Andrew John Prosofsky

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Posted 08 April 2010 - 06:03 PM

Hi there,

First of all, I have to thank you all for being very helpful as of late. I've had some important questions regarding a super16mm shoot and thanks to you guys it turned out excellent.

But as for my question. Within the next few weeks I will be shooting a snyc sound project on the SR3. Having absolutely no experience with sync sound other than through digital formats (Mixer straight to XLR input in camera, eg. RED, HVX200), I am at a loss as to what to expect and what to do. There WILL be a sound guy with SD302, schoeps, tascam recorder, etc. BUT I do not want to rely on his expertise. I would like to understand the process myself as well. I have Jon Fauers SR3 handbook and I plan on reading it, but, being that you guys are such an excellent resource, I was hoping you could give me a summary regarding dos and donts, what I need to know, etc.

Thankyou very much,

Evan
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#2 Tim Carroll

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Posted 08 April 2010 - 06:16 PM

Evan,

It should be no different than shooting with any other sync sound camera. Don't know if you are using timecode for syncing or a clapper slate, I've always used a clapper slate.

The SR3 should be pretty quiet if it's in tune. If it's been a while since it's been serviced then it might make a bit of a racket. IIRC you can quiet the camera slightly with the pitch adjustment the SR3 has. Also keep a barney, packing blankets or a leather jacket around for critical sound shots where the slight camera noise might be picked up in a small room or by a close mic. In that case, throw the barney/blanket/jacket around the camera before you shoot.

If you have more specific questions, maybe we could be of more help.

Best,
-Tim
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#3 Evan Andrew John Prosofsky

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Posted 15 April 2010 - 03:15 PM

Evan,

It should be no different than shooting with any other sync sound camera. Don't know if you are using timecode for syncing or a clapper slate, I've always used a clapper slate.

The SR3 should be pretty quiet if it's in tune. If it's been a while since it's been serviced then it might make a bit of a racket. IIRC you can quiet the camera slightly with the pitch adjustment the SR3 has. Also keep a barney, packing blankets or a leather jacket around for critical sound shots where the slight camera noise might be picked up in a small room or by a close mic. In that case, throw the barney/blanket/jacket around the camera before you shoot.

If you have more specific questions, maybe we could be of more help.

Best,
-Tim


Hi Tim,

Thanks for getting back to me. So, as I understand it, if I use a clapper slate, i just film the slate getting clapped down and then later when in post I can sync the sound to the beginning of the clap? Is there any easier way? I understand the SR3 has timecode but I've never particularly understood why this is beneficial if I'm using such a basic method as described. Sorry for my ignorance, too spoiled with 'automatic' sync of digital cameras.

Evan
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#4 Tom Jensen

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Posted 15 April 2010 - 03:43 PM

Sorry to sound like a dick, but, if you are a DP, you should know this. Asking questions like that when you have the book is the lazy man's way. Read the book and if have questions, then come back. Don't expect to come on here and have your homework done for you. Do a Google search.
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#5 Evan Andrew John Prosofsky

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Posted 15 April 2010 - 05:07 PM

Sorry to sound like a dick, but, if you are a DP, you should know this. Asking questions like that when you have the book is the lazy man's way. Read the book and if have questions, then come back. Don't expect to come on here and have your homework done for you. Do a Google search.

Hi Tom,

You don't sound like a dick, but you're assuming a lot of things. First of all, I'm not a professional DP, this is a personal project with friends. Secondly, I have read the book, but, as I indicated in my original post, I have a very limited understanding of timecode and the different procedures used to sync sound. Being that I live in Edmonton, a place where very few people work professionally, its hard to gain experience and learn about these things except through asking questions to the bigger more experienced guys like yourselves.

Asking you guys questions uncomplicates things that seem complicated in the handbook, and gives myself a sense of self assurance when I'm shooting. Doing everything for the first time all by yourself can be scary, and this is why I like to ask you guys questions which sound stupid and obvious. If it would help if I were to be more specific, I can try...mainly what I'm wanting to know is what the benefits are between different procedures of recording audio and syncing timecode.

I understand the most basic method is to start recording, film someone clapping their hands in the shot, and then sync the audio to that hand clap later on. I'm assuming this is fairly archaic considering the SR3 has timecode recording. But I dont really understand the entire procedure for that. I understand that the process involves 'jamming' the timecode between both the SR3 and the external recorder through the use of some sort of external device? This is what worries/frustrates me because I dont understand how to go about doing that, and secondly, how the post house goes about syncing the audio, or if i should do it, etc etc. I really just need more real world information.

Thanks for your patience,
Evan
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#6 Tim Carroll

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Posted 15 April 2010 - 05:20 PM

Evan,

If you're not a professional DP then you might want to think about removing the "Director of Photography" title under your "Profile Information" as that is where you list your occupation. If you are just learning cinematography, which it sounds like you are from your posts, then you might want to list your occupation as "Student" for now.

I don't use timecode for syncing audio for two reasons. First, I don't have a timecode audio recorder that I could "jam" with an SR3 or Aaton camera even if I wanted to. And Second, I always sync audio in post/editing, I don't have the process/telecine house sync the audio for me. If you do what I do, then the clapper slate works fine. And since I always slate every scene and take anyway (so as to keep track of all the shots when it gets to the editing bay) the slate is there at the beginning of each take. It takes only about an extra second to clap it.

Best,
-Tim
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#7 Tom Jensen

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Posted 15 April 2010 - 05:47 PM

In the simplest of terms, what you said about the hand clap or slate clap is correct. Think of timecode as a clock that runs continuously whether you are shooting or not. The camera has one and the timecode slate has one and the sound recorder has one. Jamming them just means to get them all in synch. The sound an does that. The assistant or you can synch this to the camera using a cable and a synchbox. Now when the sound starts recording, the camera starts rolling and the slate is opened, they will all have the same timecode. The camera will record the numbers on the slate and the number will be burned onto the film by a tiny little light inside the camera. The sound will have it embedded in the tape. The slate is just that, a slate. You don't have to clap it because the camera already recoded the picture of the timecode. Clapping the slate is simply a back up if all else fails. The usefulness comes during editing. When synching dailies, the editor takes the transferred film and sticks the tape into his machine, then he takes the audio an sticks it in his machine and then he rolls the tape. It is sorted by roll number. When he gets to the slate, he stops and reads the number on the slate. Then he types that number into the keyboard and the sound machine finds the number on the audio and moves it into a position that matches the picture. He then locks the sound and film together. Now you have synch that you can edit. I've probably left out a few steps like digitizing the film etc. But, you get my drive. I'm doing this from memory so anyone feel free to add to or correct any erroneous info I may have given or forgotten.
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#8 John Sprung

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Posted 15 April 2010 - 06:23 PM

Even with a time code slate, you should clap the sticks. Code generators can drift a little, distance to the microphone matters, and the sticks let you correct out all the little variables. The numbers get you close, the sticks are the final answer. The big advantage to the time code slate is in automatically finding the right scene and take. In ancient times, we had to listen to the voice slates and write the scene and take info on the mag film, then mark the frame with the clap sound -- very labor intensive. That part of the process was called "popping sticks". But we had talkies before there was time code.

Jam the time code generators together at the start of the day, and again when you come back from lunch.

If your film runs 24.00 fps, your audio time code needs to be 30.00 fps. If the film is 23.976, sound needs to be 29.97. In European mode, it's 25.00 for both.

When in doubt, always err on the side of sound late rather than early.




-- J.S.
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#9 Evan Andrew John Prosofsky

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Posted 16 April 2010 - 01:39 AM

Evan,

If you're not a professional DP then you might want to think about removing the "Director of Photography" title under your "Profile Information" as that is where you list your occupation. If you are just learning cinematography, which it sounds like you are from your posts, then you might want to list your occupation as "Student" for now.

I don't use timecode for syncing audio for two reasons. First, I don't have a timecode audio recorder that I could "jam" with an SR3 or Aaton camera even if I wanted to. And Second, I always sync audio in post/editing, I don't have the process/telecine house sync the audio for me. If you do what I do, then the clapper slate works fine. And since I always slate every scene and take anyway (so as to keep track of all the shots when it gets to the editing bay) the slate is there at the beginning of each take. It takes only about an extra second to clap it.

Best,
-Tim

Thanks Tim, I'll make the necessary changes
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#10 Evan Andrew John Prosofsky

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Posted 16 April 2010 - 01:40 AM

Even with a time code slate, you should clap the sticks. Code generators can drift a little, distance to the microphone matters, and the sticks let you correct out all the little variables. The numbers get you close, the sticks are the final answer. The big advantage to the time code slate is in automatically finding the right scene and take. In ancient times, we had to listen to the voice slates and write the scene and take info on the mag film, then mark the frame with the clap sound -- very labor intensive. That part of the process was called "popping sticks". But we had talkies before there was time code.

Jam the time code generators together at the start of the day, and again when you come back from lunch.

If your film runs 24.00 fps, your audio time code needs to be 30.00 fps. If the film is 23.976, sound needs to be 29.97. In European mode, it's 25.00 for both.

When in doubt, always err on the side of sound late rather than early.




-- J.S.

Thankyou Tom and John for your helpful responses!
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#11 John Brawley

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Posted 16 April 2010 - 07:50 AM

H I'm assuming this is fairly archaic considering the SR3 has timecode recording. But I dont really understand the entire procedure for that. I understand that the process involves 'jamming' the timecode between both the SR3 and the external recorder through the use of some sort of external device? This is what worries/frustrates me because I dont understand how to go about doing that, and secondly, how the post house goes about syncing the audio, or if i should do it, etc etc. I really just need more real world information.



Evan, arricode is a joke. It's meant to make things easier, but the implementation was half-arsed and not really thought through response to the success of Aatoncode. I could tell you all the reasons why, but just take my word for it. It's junk.

I've yet to meet a single person that's been able to make it work successfully without some kind of ongoing drama. I do know that the best chance you'll have of making it work it to go to a telecine facility with a keylink as they are the best readers of arricode (which are funnily enough made by Aaton).

So either use a Timecode slate as discussed or a regular dumb slate and you'll enjoy the unique tribal ritual of bashing two bits of wood together for film that's been with us for nearly a century...

jb
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#12 Evan Andrew John Prosofsky

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Posted 17 April 2010 - 02:27 PM

Evan, arricode is a joke. It's meant to make things easier, but the implementation was half-arsed and not really thought through response to the success of Aatoncode. I could tell you all the reasons why, but just take my word for it. It's junk.

I've yet to meet a single person that's been able to make it work successfully without some kind of ongoing drama. I do know that the best chance you'll have of making it work it to go to a telecine facility with a keylink as they are the best readers of arricode (which are funnily enough made by Aaton).

So either use a Timecode slate as discussed or a regular dumb slate and you'll enjoy the unique tribal ritual of bashing two bits of wood together for film that's been with us for nearly a century...

jb

Sounds good John, thanks!!
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